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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  March 20, 2014 4:30pm-6:31pm EDT

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because of his faith or despisers or not they are because of their color. here there are no quotas of how money from each group are admitted or allowed. thus do we memorialize those who having ceased living with us now live with the nice. just delete consecrate ourselves to carry on the struggle. too much blood has gone into the soil for less to a related pair down. too much pain and heartache of fertilize the earth on which we stand. we hear solemnly swear they shall not be in vain. today on the doorstep of our nations capital, we honor 24 heroes with the same solemn pledge that was given on the island of iwo jima, that their
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sacrifice shall never be in vain. thank you for what you all have done for our country. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the secretary of the army. >> good morning. a very special day. secretary hagel, sir, thank you obviously for your gracious words in your presence here today. as well for the tremendous leadership, steady hand you've brought to these very challenging times. chief, mrs. o., sergeant major, distinguished members of congress, all of the department of defense family, particularly those from the united states
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army, but especially to the families and the honorees who are with us here today, welcome. it is wonder to see all of you again. as i've become the 21st secretary of the army, i've had many occasions to attend some pretty historic events and i probably should go without saying today is certainly one of them. as president obama noted yesterday, this injunction serves as the largest single induction of medal of honor honorees since world war ii. 24 and amazing soldiers who will finally take their rightful place in our hall of heroes, and their stories come in nearly two dozen in total are as diverse as was their service and their hometowns were truly spread to shining sea.
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12 different states as well as puerto rico and mexico. they valiantly, and defiantly in german forest korean hilltops in vietnam countryside for, citing noise against the tremendous and fierce enemy an equally tremendous odds. each of their stories when taken alone are truly brett taking. taken together, they really form an incredible volume of history, one that details the service, the sacrifice and most of all, the courage of the american soldier. we are truly blessed that three of these medal of honor recipients are here in this hall this morning. would like to take just a second, if i may, to introduce them to you. they are sergeant santiago vera.
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sergeant first class melvin morris. and master sergeant josé rotella. please stand and be recognized for your incredible achievement. [applause] [applause] to these true american heroes, i would simply say that it is a deep honor to be in your company do you thank you for your service and your sacrifice as you just heard and i hope you have gotten a flavor for over these past several days, you are an inspiration to us all. god bless you. please have a seat.
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i would tell you, gentlemen, beyond her personal courage, we also look at you at this moment is the embodiment of 21 other heroes as the secretary mentioned. we also honor this day those whom we did not think, we did not properly recognized either in our time, or more importantly and mayors. during a speech in the house of commons less than two months before the d-day invasion, winston churchill remarked that while a metal quitters, it also casts a shadow. a metal that each of these heroes has earned and now where's symbolizes obviously tremendous personal courage and uncommon valor. at the same time, it does cloak the auditorium, cloak it in a shadow of its cast by the spirit and sacrifice of all of those who were honored yesterday at
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the white house by president obama. their memories and stories preserved and passed on by family members also who were there yesterday and were so pleased are with us here today. if i would ask a mod please those family members representing this terrific medal of honor cu can be recognized for the sacrifice your loved ones rendered to this nation. [applause] [applause] my dad, who was wise in many ways, but perhaps genetics and
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science is not amongst them use to say when he was on rare occasions proud of my brother or myself come you know you plant tomatoes come you get tomatoes. your relatives planted some pretty great tomatoes. it's been wonderful, wonderful getting to know you. god bless you for being here. [applause] as secretary hagel accurately spoke, as this day may be, it is frankly not without controversy and lingering concern. this effort indeed come as the secretary noted, began because there was a believe. we now know just inside the jewish and hispanic servicemembers who fought in world war ii, korea and the non-may have been unjustly denied the medal of honor due to racial or religious and
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prejudice of those times. we've come far as the nation. we've come far as an army, but we must never fail to recognize bias, prejudice and hate is too often a role in our nations history. president kennedy once observed that no one has been barred from the battlefield on account of his race or fighting or dying for america. there is no distinction between race or religion of a proximal to the graveyards of battle. isaac should be safe to ask america sent and daughters to join in to fight together as one, to struggle for a better and more secure future, we should not only heed, but build upon president kennedy's wide specter. never coming never separating those who serve by any means. not by us and, not by color, not
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by race, not by police. strive at all times to ensure tolerance and respect and all things and especially all people. thanks to the view that led to this day, we did in fact is we know now identify two dozen soldiers either here or representing his courage and valor were deed worthy of our nation's highest military honor, that began as a review of potential prejudice and bathroom 40s, also wholly deserving of the medal of honor for reasons that had nothing to do with our perfect history, you can only assume they were overlooked and missed inside through the influence of a long-standing but sadly ongoing people, that the military bureaucracy. at this point in time, we hope, we believe we've got lacerated all of our boss regardless for motivation. no matter how history began, i
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do personally take part in the army is ensuring ensuing african pride in those people who poured over the thousands of pages of decades-old records, who pieced together the narrative zen stories had been faded by time, who are able to identify and at last hope is properly recognize the individuals we honor at this moment. if i have one regret, it is that so few are here to receive this honor in our thanks in person. many we lost to the passage of time. many two were last on the battlefields of east and southeast asia. often after giving their lives in service to their country. general douglas macarthur believed that however horrible the incidence of war may be, the soldier called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is what he described the noblest
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development of mankind. each of these 24 soldiers offered their lives if necessary in service to our country and some larger than themselves. their selfless sacrifice saved countless lives. lives of other soldiers, comrades, buddies of arms, the millions who today enjoy the fruits of freedom they would have never otherwise known. each has earned this nation's highest military honor, claiming their rightful place in history for their personal eczema, valor always above and beyond the call of duty. today, they are what they have always bad, the noblest development of mankind. let us go forth from this
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moment,, burning anything an atheist and a of days gone by, celebrating the sacrifices in the achievements of those who have gone before and expanding upon the bedrock of freedom that they forged by their valor so that future generations might know and basket with these heroes amazingly defended, the hope and the promise of a better tomorrow. god bless these 24 heroes, and their families. god bless all of you, the united states of america in this glorious army who keeps us free. thank you. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the chief of staff of the army. >> good morning, everyone.
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it's an honor for me to stand here today, wearing this uniform, representing all soldiers past and present and honoring our comrades, these 24 great men who gave their lives in sacrifice so much for our country. secretary of defense hagel, we are grateful and thankful for your dedication. timmy maximus for being here. secretary of the army, thank you for your continued leadership in all you do to make sure that all our soldiers are properly recognized. sergeant major chandler, thank you for your leadership of our listed for us. deputy secretary of defense, undersecretary of defense, thank you for being other leaders, general officers, congressmen, senators, family members, it is an honor for me to be here today. in the faces of our recipients
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and their relatives, we see the faces of 24 heroes. they are the faces of a diverse army and a diverse america. this is that it shaped our nation's history, built this nation's strength and defended this nation's security. our nation and our army are strong because in every war, in every generation, men and women, citizens and immigrants have raised their right hands to defend the constitution of the united states. in doing so, they committed themselves to a cause greater than themselves and most importantly to the ideals of this nation. each of our heroes are different, whether it be the rank, age, and your neck, campaign, geographic, ethnic or religious diversity.
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but they are bound together as soldiers. ordinary men who under the most chaotic and difficult positions, displayed kerch at the risk of their own lives to protect their fellow soldiers, it is simply accomplished the mission. it is because of men like them through the generations that i'm so proud to wear this uniform. 70 years ago, the united states called upon millions of americans to defend the nation in world war ii. today we recognize seven remarkable soldiers who responded. in the closing days of the ngo campaign, private first class sergio laura led a squad assault on multiple enemy strong points
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to such veracity that numerous enemy soldiers were killed, surrendered or and and their pose. private joker and horror, three days after the 82nd airborne invasion of normandy france advance while patriots are pinned down by enemy fire to destroy three machine gun before fatally wounded. first lieutenant donald schwab of the third infantry division charts to heavily reinforced german place and by taking an enemy soldier hostage because the enemy unit to a straw for this appeared defensive positions. the third infantry division's private first class william leonard led the eight surviving members of his attempt to eliminate to machine gun nests and capture the object to a france. ignoring the severity of his wounds, staff sergeant manuel mendoza, dede at infantry division engaged 200 enemy
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troops come advancing on mount battaglia, italy, killing 30 of them is successfully defending the key terrain. sergeant alford need help with the first infantry division gave his life in its efforts to slow the hands of enemy soldiers and cover the retreat of squad mates during her goal affirmation. in the same campaign, private pedro can know the fourth infantry division single-handedly destroyed eight machine-gun replacements and killed nearly 30 enemy troops. in the five months that followed the action of these soldiers contributed the allied victory in europe. only five short years later, president truman to get mobilized the for war. this time advances of communist north korea and today we honor the extraordinary actions of nine korean war veterans.
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sergeant eduardo gomes of the first calvary division demolished an enemy tank and held his ground in the face of unyielding enemy force, exacting heavy enemy casualties and the advance unfriendly positions. alongside fellow for his cover man master sergeant michael piña, a veteran of world war ii ordered his unit to retreat in the face everyone please enemy and sacrificed himself to cover their safe at straw peer corporal joe bob nido up to 170 -- 187 airborne rock in it. repeatedly distracted wave after wave of enemy assaults to look renate took his life during the enemies by the withdrawal. twenty-fourth infantry division soldier private first class leonard kravitz covered the retreat of his squad mates successfully halted the enemies advance until he was killed by enemy fire.
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as enemy forces counterattack his platoon position, sergeant jack weinstein, also the 24th infantry division refused orders to withdraw an afflicted multiple casualties on the enemy until another platoon arrived to drawback enemy forces. third infantry division soldier master sergeant wanda negron similarly refused to abandon his platoon under heavy enemy fire, attacking the enemy at close range with small weapons fire and hand grenades until friendly forces arrived the next morning. private pension rivera, also the third infantry division took extraordinary measures to repulse enemy courses with every means available, including use of his last hand grenade to kill enemy soldiers in close proximity to himself. will victor espinoza of the second infantry division destroyed for enemy strong
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points of enemy tunnel system in charter one valley, killing 14 and wounding 11. despite suffering winter in a previous battle, fellow second industry division soldier, private mangrove area hiding in the same value type to critical enemy emplacement and later lost his life by covering the withdraw. in three years of fierce fighting, these nine soldiers, along for hundreds of thousands americans tied back the tide of communist advance against south korea. and all you have to do today is visit of korea to understand the difference these men made in the lives of millions of people. in 1965, the ground war in vietnam began. today we reflect upon the commence or a service and sacrifice of our vietnam veterans and their families who bore a heavy burden during and
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following a divisive war, teaching our nation a valuable lesson about honoring one's service regardless of politics. we pay tribute to the exceptional heroism of these soldiers. the first infantry division, sergeant kim valero garcia destroyed two bunkers and rescued several wounded comrades before rejoining his platoon to overrun the remaining enemy positions. staff sergeant felix falcone of the 82nd airborne division led his platoon on an enemy assault command post that person eliminated for bunkers before he was fatally wounded. specialist jorge sousa the first calvary division awarded an enemy attack on the unix command post by assaulting multiple enemy positions, killing four and forcing the enemy hasty
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withdrawal. with these units pinned down, attempting to rescue another platoon, fellow first got soldier, leonard alvarado maneuver alone to destroy multiple emplacements before he was struck down by enemy fire. twenty-fifth infantry division pretty copious was wounded while safeguarded the evacuation of fellow soldiers during an attack are your superior forces in cambodia. while administering first aid, specialist santiago derby a of the one first airborne division came under heavy fire and took immediate action to silence for enemy bunkers under occupants, preventing his company from being overrun. staff sergeant melvin mora said the fifth special forces group acted decisively during a fierce enemy attack to retrieve the body of his team commander and
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other wounded soldiers and launch a counterattack that destroyed destroyed for enemy bunkers. as a company commander in the fifth special forces group come a sergeant class josé modell advanced alone under intense enemy fire to destroy before the rocket position and reorganize the company's defensive perimeter, preventing the enemy from overrunning the battalion. every one of the stories that i outlined is awe-inspiring. taken together the actions of these 21st soldiers are an incredible illustration of the competence, commitment and care for president in our soldiers, and our veterans and in our army. in closing, let us pause to remember the sacrifices of every soldier who gave their last full measure on a distant battlefield
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i sergeant first class who reminds us, it is those who aren't even here to receive the medals. those are my heroes. they gave their life. they gave everything. they gave it all. they are a nation that stands for liberty and freedom and we believe that all should be given the opportunity to fulfill their dreams. we have taken too long to recognize these men, that they represent the soul and fabric of this great nation for which they so nobly served. we not only honor their kerch and service, but we recognize the everlasting impact that they have had on this great nation. the strength of our nation is our army. the strength of our army is our soldiers. the strength of our soldiers is our families and that is what
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makes us army strong. thank you very much. [applause] >> secretary hagel, secretary mchugh and the army chandler will now join general odierno on the stage for the induction ceremony. secretary hagel will present the medal of honor flag to recipients from the vietnam conflict. they will then be inducted into the hall of heroes. i'm 23 october, 2002, public law 10739248, section 8143 established the medal of honor fly to recognize servicemembers who have distinguished themselves by gallantry and action above and beyond the call of duty. the medal of honor fly commemorates the sacrifice of blood shed for our freedoms and gives them this is to the medal of honor been the highest award
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for valor serving in the arm for is that the united states. the light blue color with gold fringe earrings are teen white stars are adapted from the medal of honor him. specialist for, santiago jay re: via -- arabia. president of the united states of america, authorized by act of congress march 3rd, 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to specialist for, santiago jay carinthia, united states army for conspicuous directory at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. specialist for santiago jay to establish himself in 21 may 1969 will serve as a radio telephone operator and come to defeat, airmobile 500 infantry in the
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air division airmobile during a search and clear mission near tom t. republic of vietnam. through his heroic actions, the lives of the wounded were saved in the members of the company command posts were late from a very precarious situation. his exemplary performance in the face of overwhelming danger was an inspiration to his entire come any and contributed immeasurably to the success of the mission. specialist arrivia gallantry, extraordinary heroism and intrepidity at the risk of his own life above and beyond the call of duty were in keeping with the highest tradition of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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staff sergeant melvin morris. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress, march 3rd, 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to staff sergeant melvin morris, united states army or conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life, above and beyond the call of duty. staff sergeant melvin morris distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as commander of a straightforward strong from company delta, special forces group airborne, first special forces during combat operations against an armed enemy in the vicinity of chile republic of
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vietnam on september 17, 1969. on that afternoon, staff sergeant maurice is affiliated companies encountered an extensive enemy minefield and were subsequently engaged by a hostile force. staff sergeant maurice learned by radio that a fellow team commander had been killed near an enemy bunker immediately reorganized his men into an effective assault posture before advancing forward and splitting off with two men to recover the team commander's body. observing the maneuver, the hostile force concentrated its fire and staff sergeant maurice morris plugs after assisting, staff sergeant maurice charge forward into withering enemy fire with only is as oppressive virus coder. we'll enemy machine-gun emplacements continually directed fusillades against him, staff sergeant maurice destroyed positions with a hand grenade and continued his assault, ultimately eliminating for bunkers. upon reaching the bunker, staff
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sergeant repulsed the enemy, were tedious, and began the arduous trek back to friendly lines. ..
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>> the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 31863 as awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant first class jose for conspicuous gallantry at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant first class jose displayed beyond the call of duty while serving as the company commander, to be 36 company a special forces group airborne first special forces during combat operations against an armed enemy in the guam province of vietnam on september 1, 1969. that afternoon sergeant first
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class came under an intense barrage of mortar, rocket and machine-gun ignoring the enemy fire to sergeant first class immediately began placing his men into defensive positions to prevent the enemy from overrunning the battalion. repeatedly exposing himself to enemy fire this urgent first class rodela assisted wounded and was himself wounded in the back and headed b by a bee for e rocket while recovering a wounded comrade. a loan to sergeant first class rodela assaulted and rocked out the position before successfully returning to the perimeter. sergeant first class rodela's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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>> ms. alvarado accepting on behalf of her father leonard alvarado. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march third 1863 as awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to specialist leonard alvarado united states army for conspicuous gallantry and at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. specialist leonard alvarado distinguished himself by acts of golf entry above and beyond the
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call of duty while serving as a rifleman with coventry d-delta calvary division during combat operations against an armed enemy in the province republic of vietnam on august 121969. on that day as the specialist alvarado and a force moved through the jungle on route to a friendly platoon, the specialist detected enemy movement and opened fire. despite his quick reaction, the specialist and his comrades were suing pentagon by the hostile force that would block the path to the platoon. the specialist alvarado moved forward through the hostile machine-gun fire to engage the enemy troops. suddenly an enemy grenade exploded nearby wounding and momentarily stunning him. retaliating immediately he killed the grenadier as another wounded him again. the specialist called a forward
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through the fusillade to pull several comrades back within the hastily formed a perimeter realizing his elements needed to break away from the force the specialist leonard alvarado began maneuvering forward a load through a repeatedly thrown to the ground. by exploiting charges he continued advancing and firing with several emplacements including one enemy machine gun position from the dangerous position he persistently lade suppressive fire on the hostile forces and after the enemy troops had broken contract his comrades discovered that he had succumbed to his wounds. specialist alvarado's heroism and selflessness at the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon themselves, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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mr. richard conde accepting on behalf of his father stuff sergeant felix m. conde-falcon. >> the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 31863 as awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to staff sergeant felix m. conde-falcon united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. staff sergeant felix m. conde-falcon distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an active platoon leader in the company dealt with first the fit
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battalion 505th in the regiments third brigade 82nd airborne division during the combat operations against an armed enemy in the republic of vietnam. april 41969. while entering a heavily wooded section on the route of advance, staff sergeant conde-falcon at his company encountered an extensive enemy complex later identified as a battalion command post. following tactical artillery and airstrikes on the heavily secured enemy position, staff sergeant conde-falcon's platoon was selected to a sol a salt anr the bunker fortifications. moving out ahead of the platoon of the stuff sergeant conde-falcon charged the first bunker keeping the grenades as he went. as the fire increased he crawled to the blindside of an entrenchment position, jumped to the roof and tossed a grenade into the bunker at the church. without hesitating, he proceeded to the two additional bunkers, both of which he destroyed in
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the same manner as the first. rejoining his platoon on a stuff sergeant conde-falcon advanced about 100 meters through the trees before coming under intense hostile fire selecting three men to accompany him he maneuvered towards the enemy's position carrying a machine gun he single-handedly assaulted the nearest fortification killing the enemy inside before running out of ammunition. after returning to the man with his empty weapon and taking up an m-16 rifle he concentrated on the next bunker. he was shot by an assailant and soon died of his wounds. staff sergeant conde-falcon's heroism and selflessness of the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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accepting on behalf of her father specialist copus the president of the united states america authorized by act of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor for the specialist copus united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. specialist distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a
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machine gunner and company c-charlie first battalion fifth infantry regiment 25th infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy near cambodia on ma may 41970. that morning the specialists company was suddenly attacked by a hostile force firing rifles rocket propelled grenades and automatic weapons. as the specialist copus began firing his car was struck by an enemy round knocking him to the ground and injuring four american soldiers defied the vehicle. ignoring his wounds, the specialist quickly be mounted at the burning vehicle and commenced firing his machine gun at the belligerence. briefing the hostile fire directed at him and the possible destinations over the border rounds inside the track, special copas maintains suppressive fire while the wounded americans were
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safely evacuated. specialist copas continued to place fire upon the adversary until he was mortally wounded when another enemy round hit his vehicle. specialist copas action resulted in the safe evacuation of his comrades. his extraordinary heroism and selflessness at the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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tina duran accepting on behalf of her father could specialist jesus s. duran. the president of the united states america authorized by acts of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to specialist for jesus s. duran, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. specialist jesus s. duran distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an active m-16 machine gun or second battalion fifth calvary first calvary division airmobile during combat
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operations against an armed enemy in the republic of vietnam on april 10, 1969. that afternoon for reconnaissance platoon was moving into an deliberate enemy complex when the lead elements began taking concentrated in bushfire from every side. the command post was in imminent danger of being overrun. with an m-16 machine gun from his hip, the specialist jesus s. duran pushed forward and assumed a position near the command post. as hostile forces stormed forward, the specialist jesus s. duran stood tall in a cloud of dust and bursting grenades directed towards him and thwarted the enemy with devastating streams of machine gun fire burning that two seriously wounded troopers later pinned down under harassing fire to specialist to duran assaulted the suppressive enemy positions firing deadly bursts on the run. mounting the log he fired directly to the enemies foxholes eliminating for him to cutting down several others as they
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fled. specialist jesus s. duran continued support effective fire on the disorganized fleeing enemy. specialist duran's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect a great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] command sergeant major accepting on behalf of sergeant candelario garcia. >> the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 3, 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant candelario garcia,
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united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant candelario garcia distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an acting team leader for company b-bravo, first battalion, second infantry, first brigade, first infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in lai khe, republic of vietnam on december 8, 1968. on that day while conducting reconnaissance, sergeant garcia and his platoon discovered communication wire and other signs of an enemy base leading into a densely vegetated area. as the men advanced they came under intense fire. several men were hit and trapped in the open. a pouring of a hostile bullets, sergeant garcia crawled within 10 meters of a machine gun bunker, leapt to his feet and render a clear the fortifications firing his rifle
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as he charged. sergeant garcia jammed to hand grenades into the gun and placed the muzzle of his weapon inside, killing all four occupants. continuing to expose himself to intense enemy fire, sergeant garcia raced 15 meters to another bunker and killed his three defenders with handbrake and rifle fire. after again braving the enemy's garage in order to rescue two casualties come here join his company in an assault which overran the remaining enemy positions. sergeant garcia's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] the vietnam conflict will now be
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unveiled in acting specialist staff sergeant morris to specialist alvarado, staff sergeant caldon, duran and garcia into the hall. [applause] [applause] the secretary will present the medal of honor to the medal of honor recipients from the korean conflict. they will then be indexed into
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the whole. charles baldonado accepting on behalf of his brother. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to corporal joe baldonado united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. corporal baldonado distinguished himself by act of golf intrigue and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an active machine gunner in the third squad second platoon company b-bravo 187th regiment during combat operations against an armed enemy in kangdong
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november 251950. on that morning the enemy launched an attack in an effort to seize the hill occupied by corporal baldonado and his company. the platoon had expended most of its ammunition and retelling of the enemy attack and the platoon leader decided to commit the third squad with the supply of ammunition and defensive action. since there was no time to dig and because of the proximity of the enemy who had advanced within 25 yards of the platoon position, corporal baldonado placed his weapon. causing them to fall back in this order of the enemy then concentrated on the gun and attempted to knock it out by raising the position of the small groups and hurling hand grenades. several times grenades exploded extremely close to corporal baldonado but failed to interrupt his continuous firing. the hostile troops made repeated attempts to storm the position and were driven back each time with a casualty.
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the enemy finally withdrew after making a final assault on corporal baldonado's position during which a grenade landed near his gun and killing him instantly. corporal baldonado's heroism and selflessness of the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect a great credit upon himself, his unit coming into the united states army. [applause] mr. tyrone espinoza accepting on behalf of his father, corporal victor espinoza. the president of the united states of america authorized by
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act of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to corporal victor h. espinoza united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and gone to the call of duty. corporal victor h. espinoza distinguished himself by act of golf intrigue and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as enacting riflemen in company a-alpha 23rd infantry regiment, second infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in chorwon korea on august 1, 1952. on that date, corporal victor h. espinoza and his unit were responsible for securing and holding a vital enemy help as the friendly units neared its objective, it was subjected to a devastating volume of enemy fire slowing its progress. corporal victor h. espinoza unhesitatingly and being fully aware of the hazards involved,
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left his place of comparative safety and made a deliberate one-man assault on the enemy with his rifle and grenades destroying a machine gun and killing its crew. corporal victor h. espinoza continued across the fire swept terrain to the vantage point he attacked an enemy position and two bunkers with grenades and fire walking out the enemy position and destroying both and killing their occupants. upon reaching the crest and after running out of rifle ammunition, he called for more grenades. a comrade who was behind him through chinese grenades and he pulled the pins and hurled them into the trenches killing and wounded many enemy with their weapons to be a continuing through the tunnel to corporal victor h. espinoza made a charge in afflicting at least seven more casualties upon the enemy retreating into the tunnel. the corporal was quickly in pursuit of the fire from the opening prevented him from
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overtaking the nne. as a result, he destroyed with tnt called for more grenades and hurled them at the enemy troops until they were out of reach. corporal victor h. espinoza's valor displayed a strong point and took a toll on the enemy resulting in at least 1 14 dead and 11 wounded. corporal victor h. espinoza's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect a great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] mr. pete corral accepting on
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eduardo corral gomez. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant eduardo corral gomez the united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant eduardo c. gomez distinguished himself by acts of golf intrigue and infiltrated -- gallantry and the first coventry division during operations against an armed enemy in korea september 3, 1950. that afternoon while conducting combat patrol sergeant gomez's was attacked by the force that moved within 75 yards of the command post before he was immobilized by rocket fire. however a tank and multiple enemy machine guns continued
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with a devastating fire. realizing the tank pose a threat to the entire perimeter to sergeant voluntarily called 30 yards vulnerable to the enemy observation and fire, boarded the tank, pried open one of the hatches and dropped a grenade into the whole killing the crew. wounded in the left side of returning to his position to sergeant refused observing the tripod of the 40 caliber machine gun was inoperable by a fire he cradled the weapon in his arms and returned to the defensive positions and swept with enemy fire although his weapon overheated and burned his hands into the wounds bled come he maintained his stand and upon the order to withdraw in the face of overwhelming enemy superiority remained to provide fire. he poured fire into the enemy ranks exacting a toll on the casualties and retarding their
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advance. sergeant gomez withi gomez wentt to leave for medical attention until the company established new defensive positions. sergeant gomez's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] ms. lori accepting on behalf of her uncle private first class leonard m. kravitz. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 3, 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private first class leonard m.
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kravitz, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private first class leonard m. kravitz distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an assistant machine gunner with company and fifth infantry regiment, 24th infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in yangpyong, korea on march 6 and 7th, 1951. after friendly elements have repulsed to probing attacks, the enemy launched a fanatical banzai charge with heavy supporting fire and despite staggering losses, press to the assault with ruthless determination. when the machine gun or was wounded in the initial phase of the action, private first class kravitz immediately seized the weapon and poor devastating fire into the ranks of the onrushing assailants. the enemy affected and exploited a breach on the left flank,
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rendering the friendly positions unattainable. upon order to withdraw, private first class kravitz remained to provide fire for the retired elements to be at protecting enemy troops moving towards the positions, private first class kravitz swept the soldiers with deadly accurate fire killing the entire group. the destructive retaliation caused the enemy to concentrate vicious fire on his position and enable the friendly elements to withdraw. later on after friendly troops had returned, the private first class kravitz was found dead behind the gun that he had managed surrounded by numerous enemy dead. private first class kravitz extra very heroism and selflessness at the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty in keeping with the highest traditions of military service his unit and the united states army.
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[applause] >> ms. iris negron accepting on behalf of her father, juan e. nergron. >> a president of the united states of america authorized by acts of congress, march 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to the master sergeant juan e. nergron, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. mr. sergeant steve levin distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a member of company l., 65th infantry
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regiment, third infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in kalma-eri, korea on april 28, 1951. that afternoon, master sergeant negron took up the position on the exposed right place after an enemy force had overrun a section of the line. when notified that the elements of the company were withdrawing, the master sergeant negron refused to leave his position and instead of delivering withering fire at hostile troops who have broken through a roadblock. when the hostile troops approached his position, master sergeant negron accurately hurled hand grenades at the short-range holding their attack. mr. sergeant negron held the position throughout the night while friendly forces organized and launched a counterattack. the next morning after the enemy had been repulsed, friendly forces relieved surge i sergeann and found the bodies of soldiers in his position. master sergeant negron's heroism and selflessness above and
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beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect a great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> michael david pena accepting on behalf of his father, master sergeant mike c. pena. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to master sergeant mike c. pena united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.
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master sergeant mike c. pena distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a member of company f., fifth cavalry regiment, first calvary division during combat operations against an armed enemy in waegwan, korea. on september 4, 1950. that evening, under cover of darkness and a jury mast, an enemy battalion moved within a few yards of master sergeant pena's platoon. recognizing the enemy approach, master sergeant pena and his men opened fire but the enemy's sudden emergence and accurate point-blank fire forced the friendly troops to withdraw. master sergeant pena rapidly reorganized his men and lead them in a counterattack which succeeded and regaining the positions they just lost. he and his men quickly established a defensive perimeter and laid i laid down devastating fire that enemy troops convinced -- continued to
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hurl themselves at the defenses in overwhelming numbers. realizing that the star supply of ammunition would soon make their positions untenable, master sergeant pena ordered his men to fall back and manned the machine guns to cover the withdraw. he single-handedly held back the enemy until the early hours of the following morning when his position was overrun and he was killed. master sergeant pena's heroism and selflessness at the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty o are in keepig with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] sergeant ashley randle accepting on behalf of her grandfather, private demensio rivera.
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the presidenthe president of thd states of america authorized by acts of congress march 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private demensio rivera, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private demensio rivera distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an automatic rifleman with second platoon company g., seventh infantry regiment, third infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in changyongni, korea, on may 23, 1951. early that morning, a large hostile force emerged from a dense fog and viciously attacked private rivera and his comrades. private rivera immediately responded by firing with deadly accuracy until his weapon
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jammed. without hesitating he threw the rifle down and began to engage with his pistol and grenades. at one point, private rivera crawled up from the placement to engage in infiltrating enemy soldiers in fierce combat. with only the sound of footsteps and ask your shadows to guide the aim, private rivera held his position against tremendous odds. inflicting numerous casualties on the enemy until he found himself without ammunition of any kind except one grenade. displaying a fighting spirit and utterly selfless devotion to duty, private rivera pulled the pin from the last grenade and waited for the enemy to reach his position. as enemy troops looked inside the bunker, private rivera activated the grenade with a full knowledge it meant his almost certain death. when the debris from the explosion cleared, friendly forces recovered a severely wounded a rivera and discovered the body of the four dead or dying enemy soldiers surrounding him.
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private rivera's extort a very heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself by his unit, and the united states army. [applause] mr. joe rodriguez accepting on behalf of his uncle private miguel a. vera. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 3, 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private miguel a. vera, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the
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risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private miguel a. vera distinguished himself by acts of golf entry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as an automatic rifleman with company f. 38th infantry regiment, second infantry division and chorwon, korein chorwon,korea september . that morning, despite suffering from wounds inflicted in a previous battle, private vera voluntarily left the station to join his comrades in an attack against well fortified enemy positions on the hill of great importance. when the assaulting elements have moved within 20 yards of the enemy positions, they were suddenly trapped by a heavy volume of mortar, artillery and small arms fire. the company prepared to make a limited withdraw that the private vera volunteered to remain behind to provide covering fire. as his companions moved to safety, private vera remained
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steadfast in his position directing fire towards the hostile positions despite the intense volume of fire, which the enemy was concentrating upon him. later in the morning, when the friendly force return, they discovered a private vera in the same position of facing the enemy. private vera's noble intrepidity and sacrifice saved many comrades lives. private vera's terrorism and selflessness of the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> yancy weinstein accepting on behalf of her husband sergeant jack weinstein.
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the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant jack weinstein, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant jack weinstein distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while leading the first platoon company g-golf, 21st infantry regiment on the 24th infantry division in kumson korea on october 19, 1951. that afternoon, 30 enemy troops counterattacked sergeant weinstein's platoon. most of the members had been wounded in the previous action and withdrew under the heavy fire. sergeant weinstein, however, remained in his position and
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continued to fight off the enemy killing at least six with his m1 rifle before running out of ammunition. although under extremely heavy enemy fire, sergeant weinstein refused to withdraw and continued firing hand grenades found lying near his position. he again halted the enemy's progress and inflicted numerous casualties. alone and unaided, he held the ground which his platoon had fought tenaciously to take and held out against overwhelming odds until another platoon was able to relieve him and drive back the enemy. sergeant weinstein's leg had been broken by a grenade at a suffered in previous battles had reopened but he refused to withdraw successfully bought time for his wounded comrades to reach friendly lines. sergeant weinstein's extra very heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect a great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause]
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dot korean conflict plaque will now be unveiled and ducting corporal joe r. baldonado, victor h. espinoza, first class leonard m. kravitz, master sergeant juan e. negron, master sergeant mike c. pena, private demensio rivera and sergeant vera and weinstein into the hall. [applause] >> general odierno will present
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the medal of honor to the medal of honor recipients from the world war ii conflict. they will then be inducted into the hall of heroes. >> ms. perez accepting on behalf of her father, private pedro cano. the president of the united states of america authorized by acts of congress march 31863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private pedro cano, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private cano distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with company c-charlie eighth infantry regiment, fourth infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in schevenhutte, germany,
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december 3, 1944. on the afternoon of the second,, american infantrymen launched an attack against germa german and placements that were repulsed by enemy machine gun fire. armed with a rocket launcher, private cano crawled through the densely mined area under heavy enemy fire and successfully reached the point within 10 yards of the recent placement. he quickly fired a rocket into the position, killing the two batters in five supporting rifleman. without hesitating, he fired into a second position, killing two more gunners and proceeded to assault the position with hand grenades killing several others and dispersing the rest. then, when an adjacent company encountered heavy fire, private cano crossed the company front, crept to within 15 yards of the nearest enemy and placement and killed the machine gunners with a rocket. with another round he killed two more gunners and displaced a second gun. on the following day the company
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renewed attack and again and counter heavy machine gun fire. private cano armed with a rocket launcher again moved across fire swept terrain and destroyed three enemy machine guns in succession killing the six hunters. private cano's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> ms. adams accepting on behalf of her own goal, private joe gandara -- uncle joe gandara.
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>> the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress, march 31863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private joe gandara, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private joe gandara distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with company d-delta, second battalion, 507th parachute infantry regiment on the 17th airborne division during combat operations against an armed enemy in the amfreville, france on june 9, 1944. on that today, private gandara's detachment came under devastating fire from strong german force, pinning them into the ground for the perco of four hours. private gandara voluntarily advanceadvanced alone towards ty
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position, firing his machine gun from his hip as he moved forward. he destroyed three hostile machine guns before he was fatally wounded. private gandara'private gandarad selflessness at the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> mr. alfonso lara accepting on behalf of his brother, private first class salvador j. lara.
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the president of the united states of america authorized by acts of congress march 31863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to private first class salvador j. lara, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. private first class salvador j. lara distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a squad leader of a rifle squad with second platoon, company 180th infantry 45th infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy in the aprilia, italy may 27, 1944. on the afternoon of the 27th, private first class lara aggressively led the squad and neutralizing enemy strong points and inflicting large numbers of casualties on the enemy is.
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having taken his initial objective, private first class larlara noticed the units to the right was meeting stiff resistance from a large entrenched enemy force. private first class lara quickly gathered the men and attack a wide section of the position killing four and forcing 15 others to surrender and causing the two enemy crews to abandon the weapons. his efficient performance enabled both his own unit and the united states right to continue their objectives. the next morning as the company resumed the attack the private first class lara sustained a severe leg wound but didn't start date .-full-stop to receive first aid. the company suffered casualties as a result of withering machine-gun fire coming from a strong point on the flank. after requesting permission to destroy the machine gun, the armed only with an automatic rifle, private first class lara called a loan to the nearest machine gun. despite his painful wound in the extreme danger of the task he rose and fearlessly charged the next killing the crew members.
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another machine gun opened fire on him, but he quickly neutralized the weapon with accurate fire from the ground killing three more of the enemies. his aggressive attack forced to other machine gun crews to flee the weapons. after rejoining the company, private first class lara continued his performance until he captured his objectives. private first class lara's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> ms. patricia kennedy accepting on behalf of her
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father, private first class william f. leonard. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress, march 31863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant william f. leonard, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant william f. leonard distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a squad leader and company c-charlie 30th infantry regiment, third infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy near st. die, france on november 7, 1944. sergeant leonard's platoon was reduced to eight men as a result of blistering artillery, mortar, machine gun and rifle fire.
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sergeant leonard led to the survivors in an assault over the hill covered by trees and shrubs which the enemy continuously swept with automatic weapons fire. ignoring bullets, which pierced his back, sergeant leonard killed two snipers at ranges of 50 and 75 yards and engaged in today's trading machine gun nest with grenades killing the two-man crew. though momentarily stunned by eight bazooka shal shell, serget leonard relentlessly advanced ad them ultimately knocking out a second machine gun nest and capturing the roadblock objective. sergeant leonard's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit on himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] [applause]
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>> ms. alice mendoa accepting on behalf of her husband staff sergeant manuel v. mendoza. the presiden president of the ud states of america authorized by act of congress march the third 1863 has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to the staff sergeant manuel v. mendoza united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. staff sergeant manuel v. mendoza distinguished himself by act of galvin treat elite co- gallantry and intrepidity beyond the call of duty while serving as a platoon sergeant with company b-bravo 350 of infantry, 88th infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy on mt. battaglia, italy on october 4, 1944. that afternoon the enemy
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launched a violent counterattacks preceded by a heavy mortar barrage. staff sergeant mendoza already wounded in the arm and leg wrapped a thompson submachine gun and ran to the crest of the hill where he saw approximately 200 enemy troops charging up the slopes and playing flamethrowers, machine pistols, rifles and hand grenades. staff sergeant mendoza immediately began to engage the enemy firing five clips and killing ten enemy soldiers. after exhausting his ammunition he picked up a carbine and indeed its magazine of the enemy. by this time an enemy with a flamethrower had almost reached the crest but was quickly eliminated as the staff sergeant mendoza fired his pistol. seeing the force continued to advance, staff sergeant mendoza jumped into a machine gun and placement that had been abandoned and opened fire. unable to engage the entire enemy force from his location, he picked up the machine gun and moved forward firing from his hip and spring a withering hail
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of bullets to the enemy causing them to break into confusion. he then said the machine gun on the ground and continued to fire until it jammed. without hesitating, staff sergeant mendoza began throwing hand grenades at the enemy causing them to flee. after the enemy had withdrawn, he advanced down the slope of the hill retrieved numerous enemy weapons scattered about the area, captured a wounded enemy soldier and returned to consolidate friendly positions with all available men. staff sergeant mendoza's stand resulted in 30 german soldiers killed into the successful defense of the hill. staff sergeant mendoza's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself on his unit, and the united states army. [applause]
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>> mr. robert nietzel accepting on behalf of his cousin, sergeant alfred b. nietzel. the president of the united states of america authorized by act of congress march 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to sergeant alfred b. nietzel, united states army for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. sergeant alfred b. nietzel distinguished himself by act of galvigallantry and intrepidity e serving as a leader for company h-hotel 16th infantry regiment first infantry division during combat operations against an
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armed enemy and heistern, germany, november 18, 1944. that afternoon, sergeant nietzel fought tenaciously to retell a vicious enemy attack against his unit. sergeant nietzel employed accurate intense fire from his machine gun and successfully slowed the hostile advance. however, the overwhelming enemy force continued to press forward. realizing he desperately needed reinforcement, sergeant nietzel ordered the three remaining members of the squad to return to the company command post and secure aid. he immediately returned to the attention to cover the movement with fire. after expending all of his machine gun ammunition, sergeant nietzel began firing his rifle into the attacking ranks until he was killed by the explosion of an enemy grenade. sergeant nietzel's extraordinary heroism and selflessness of the cost of his own life above and beyond the call of duty or in keeping with the highest
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traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] >> doctor terry schwab accepting on behalf of his father, first lieutenant donald k. schwab. >> the president of the united states of america, authorized by act of congress march 31863, has awarded in the name of congress the medal of honor to first lieutenant donald k. schwab, united states army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. first lieutenant nietzel distinguished himself by act of gallantry and intrepidity above
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and beyond the call of duty while serving as a commander of company e-echo, 15th infantry regiment, third infantry division during combat operations against an armed enemy near lure, france on september 17, 1944. that afternoon, as first lieutenant schwab led his company across 400 yards of exposed ground, an intense burst of machine gun and machine pistol fire sprang forth without warning from the woods directly in front of the american force. first lieutenant schwab quickly extricated his men from the attempted ambush and lead them back to the desolate at position. soon after, he was ordered to overwhelm the enemy line. he rapidly organized his men into a skirmish line and with courage again led them forward into the enemy fire. when halted a second time, first lieutenant schwab moved from man to man to supervise the collection of the wounded and organized companies withdraw. from desolate he rallied the decimated force for a third
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charge of the hostile strong point and successfully worked his way to within 50 yards of the germans before ordering his men to hit the dirt. while automatic weapons fire around him, he rushed forward a load firing at the german foxholes aiming for the vital enemy machine pistol nest which have sparked to the german resistance and caused heavy casualties among his name. so let it through the mist and the rain by enemy players committee charged the german placement, ripped the half cover off the hostile firing ditka mistook the german gunner on the head with his carbine in the drug german back to the friendly lines. first lieutenant schwab's actions so disorganized hostile infantry resistance that the enemy forces withdrew abandoning the formidable defensive line. first lieutenant schwab's heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty or in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon
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himself, his unit and the united states army. [applause] the world war ii conflict plaque will now be unveiled in ducting private pedro cano, private joe gandara, private first class salvador lara, private first class william f. leonard, staff sergeant manuel mendoza, sergeant alfred nietzel and first lieutenant donald k. schwab into the hall of heroes. [applause] ..
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a military guard force was needed to guarantee the security of its arms serviced establishments around the world. students atop the fundamentals of security. it learned the pitfalls and problems which are hazards
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security, particularly the adverse effect on security of incidents of misconduct. >> personal conduct overseas may have an added burden effect upon your duties. generally speaking these areas are the black market, illegal money exchange, reckless driving , drinking, and -- >> this week in american history tv real america 1964 training film for marines working state department security posts. sunday at 4:00 p.m. eastern on c-span three. >> and tonight on book tv in prime time stories from recent history at 8:00 eastern bareboat circle of treason, the cia account of a trader in the men he betrayed.
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>> a day after russia and next crimea from ukraine nato secretary-general call that the greatest of the european security since the cold war. remarks at the brookings institution yesterday. >> ladies and gentlemen we live in a different world than we did less than a month ago. russia military aggression in ukraine is in blatant breach of international commitment.
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it is a violationinternational and it is a violation of ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. the annexation of crimea through a so-called referendum held at gunpoint is illegal and illegitimate. and it undermines all efforts to find a peaceful political solution. this is a wake-up call for the euro-atlantic community, for nato, and for all those committed to a europe whole, free, and at peace. we know that we cannot take our security for granted.
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we have seen other crises in europe in the past decades. the western balkans in the 1990s, georgia in 2008, but this is the gravest threat to european security and stability since the end of the cold war. first because of its scale with one of the largest movements of troops for many decades. second, because of the stakes, the freedom of 45 million people and their right to make their own choice. and third, because this crisis is right on nato's border. but ukraine cannot be viewed in isolation, and this crisis is not just about ukraine.
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we see what could be called 21st century revisionism. attempts to turn back the clock to draw new dividing lines on our map, to monopolize markets, or simply rip up the international rule book and to use force to solve problems rather than the international mechanisms that we have spent decades to build. we have thought that such behavior had been confined to history. but it's back, and it's dangerous because it violates
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international norms of accepted behavior. it exports instability. it reuses the potential to cooperate and build trust, and ultimately it undermines our security. not just nato's or ukraine's security, but also russia's. if the rules don't apply, if agreements are not honored, certainly russia also stands to suffer the consequences. russia was among those who committed in 1994 to respect ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty.
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russia pledged not to threaten or use force against ukraine. by turning its back on that agreement, russia has called into question its credibility and reliability as an international actor. and its steps to annex crimea are a clear violation of the united nations charter. russia must honor its international commitments, cease all military activities against ukraine, and seek a peaceful political solution. including through direct dialogue with the government of ukraine, because on its current
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course, russia is choosing increased international isolation. there are no quick and easy ways to stand up to global bullies because our democracies debate, deliberate, and consider the options before taking decisions. because we value transparency and seek legitimacy for our choices. and because we see force as the last, not the first, resort. the only way to address such challenges is for europe and north america to stand together. this is what we have done from the start of this crisis.
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nato's clear position has been to condemn russia's military actions in ukraine to stand firmly in support of the government in kiev and to make clear that president putin's decisions to escalate the situation have consequences. as a first step, we have suspended joint planning for a maritime mission for the destruction of syria's chemical weapons. this would have been the first joint operation of the nato-russia council. we also decided that no staff level, civilian or military, meetings will take place with russia for now. and we have put the entire range of nato-russia corporation you should review. nato foreign ministers will take
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decisions when they meet in brussels early next month. at the same time, we have kept the door open for political dialogue in the nato russia council to give russia an opportunity to engage. we have also taken measures to strengthen nato's readiness. they include more assets for our baltic air policing mission, surveillant nights over poland and romania and heightened awareness. allies have taken further steps to impose diplomatic and economic consequences. these are not our preferred choice. they are inevitable and
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appropriate consequences of russia's choices. no one wants to turn away from our cooperation with russia, but no one can ignore that russia has violated the very principles upon which that cooperation is built. so business as usual is not an option. ladies and gentlemen, in times like this, when the security of the euro-atlantic area is challenged, the north atlantic alliance has not wavered, and it will not waver. for 65 years, we have been clear in our commitment to one another
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as at llies and the global security system to which nato is rooted. our transatlantic foundation is our strength, and it has given us the ability to consult, cooperate, and cope with any crisis. this does not mean that nato is the only solution to every crisis in the euro-atlantic region, but i do believe it is part of every solution because the alliance provides three elements that are crucial for facing modern security challenges and that are vital for europe's and america's defense. these are political legitimacy,
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tried and tested structures, and military strength. now, first, political legitimacy. the combined and voluntary will of 28 of the world's strongest sovereign democracies is an extremely powerful source of political legitimacy. something that unilateral action or coalitions of the willing simply cannot enjoy. this carries over into our missions and operations. it attracts partners whose political support and military contributions add to our broader international legitimacy. our mission in afghanistan is a
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clear example. it has included 50 countries. all 28 allies and 22 partner nations. that's one-fourth of all the world's countries. the biggest and most effective coalition in recent history. a coalition that only nato could have gathered and commanded. and that leads me to my second point. nato provides tried and tested political and military structures. we have a unique permanent forum for political consultation where north americans and europeans meet every day to debate and decide how to ensure our collective security. just two weeks ago we met at
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poland's request to consult within the framework of the washington treaty. this allowed us to immediately address the security concerns of one of our members and to reaffirm our solidarity. our political and military structures also provide us with a permanent crisis response system so we can react quickly and effectively to any concern with political measures, with military measures, or an appropriate mix of the two. we also have the permanent nato military command structure. so when we decide to take any military action, we have the
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right framework with the right skills and the right people already in place. we have headquarters that can be deployed quickly to command operations and missions. we have reaction forces on standby. and we can bring the necessary military contributions together quickly from nato allies as well as from over 40 partner nations on five continents. time and again when an ally has felt its security under threat, we have come together and quickly provided the necessary support. after 9/11 when we deployed surveillance planes here to the united states, during the syria
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crisis when we deployed missile defense systems to turkey, and today when our surveillance aircraft are monitoring our borders in eastern europe. now, imagine that nato did not exist. every time a crisis broke out, a political and military framework would have to be built from scratch. political consensus would have to be forged. partners found, military plans developed, and capabilities designed, delivered, and deploy. this would be costly. in terms of effectiveness, in terms of money, and in terms of
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time. indeed, once the necessary elements for a response were in place, it could be too late to stem the crisis. so, our standing structures save time. they save effort. and they save taxpayers' money. they bring other advantages, too. they allow us to harmonize military requirements across the alliance. they support the equipping, training, and exercising of our troops. and they have helped us to build the most capable and connected military forces in history. and this is my third point. nato's unique military strength, it is a force multiplier. and it allows every ally, even
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its most powerful one, to pack a bigger punch. let me point out a few of the ways that american security has benefited from nato's collective strength. again, afghanistan is a good example. in 2010, as american forces searched, european allies searched, and partners searched, too. over the past ten years, for every two u.s. soldiers who have served in afghanistan, one european soldier has always served with them. some 400,000 european soldiers have rotated through afghanistan to help make sure it would never
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again be a launching pad for international terrorism. in libya, three years ago, european allies, canada, and nato partners played a crucial role in enforcing an arms embargo, maintaining a no-fly zone, and protecting the people from attacks by their own leader. today in kosovo, over 30 european and nato partner countries are keeping the peace. and off the coast of somalia, ships from four allied navies, spain, turkey, italy, and the netherlands, are sailing with u.s. ships. patrolling against pirates, and keeping vital sea lanes safe.
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european nations are helping to ease america's security burden in other ways, too. for example, the european union is running its own counterpiracy operation. and several european nations have stepped up to respond to the growing instability in africa. in particular, in mali and central africa. so, nato makes a unique contribution to our security because only nato brings together the world's most capable democracies in a permanent integrated political and military structure. and only nato delivers the political legitimacy and military strength that no one nation or ad hoc coalition can deliver on its own.
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it comes down to a simple truth. shared security is better than solitary insecurity. and it's cheaper, too. it's why nato is a great defender of america, a great deal for america. and it's why nato matters to america. that said, i am the first to stress that europe must do more. i take every opportunity to point out that there should be a fairer sharing of the costs and the responsibilities. both between north america and europe and within europe. and developments in ukraine are
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a stark reminder that security in europe cannot be taken for granted. and that neither europe nor america can come up with the solution alone. that's why i will continue to remind european nations that they need to step up politically and millitarily to hold the line on defense cuts, to increase their defense spending, and to work together to fill key capability gaps, including missile defense, cyber defense, and joint intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance.
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later this year, in wales in the united kingdom, we will hold our next nato summit. we need to take tough positions in view of the long-term strategic impact of russia's aggression on our own security. our commitment to the security of allies is unbreakable. we will bring our isef mission to a close and prepare our future partnership with afghanistan. we will ensure we have the right capabilities we need to address the modern threats we face, like cyber attacks and missile proliferation. and we will strengthen our partnerships with like-minded countries in our neighborhood and around the world.
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our wales summit will move us along a path we have paved together to ensure our alliance is even better suited to meet the collective security requirements of every allied nation. including your own. and fit to face any challenge the future may hold. ladies and gentlemen, as recent events have shown, we continue to face critical security challenges, and new challenges are emerging all the time. an environment where countries decide they can redraw the geopolitical map, use the cyber domain to cause harm, or attack innocent people because of political and ideological
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disagreement. we must stand united in the face of all those challenges which make our world more dangerous and unpredictable. our common history shows us the way. in june, we will commemorate the 17th anniversary of the d day landings. i remember my own visit to normandy together with my family. seeing the beaches, where so many allied troops, european and american, gave their lives for freedom. walking past the rows of whitehead stones that mark those soldiers' graves. those brave soldiers who stormed the normandy beaches knew then
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what we must not forget now, that sharing security today means preserving freedom, democracy, and prosperity for tomorrow. that's the spirit in which nato was founded. and that's why nato matters for the united states and for all the allies today and in decades to come. thank you. [ applause ]
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okay, are the mics working? sorry about the technical interruption. secretary-general, thank you so much for those very spirited and important remarks. it's very much, as we open up to the audience, a spirit of anniversary. as you were speaking about d day, it wasn't just the normandy beach landings, it was also the russians be part of that alliance on the eastern front. and it's also all of the anniversaries of the siege of stalingrad and other issues. our world war ii history was a time that we shared. unfortunately, it's also about the 160th anniversary of another series of crisis in the crimea. i started to remember that the crimean war actually broke out around 1854, so again, 160 years
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ago. that was also over a miscalculation, misunderstanding about russia's interest then and what was the ottoman empire and the role of slavs and the orthodox christians that end up with another series of events that's led to not just recriminations, but unfortunately military action on and around that same peninsula with lots of strange people on different sides. the balaclava, which we've seen in crimea on those various outposts. so as mr. putin reminded in his speech the other day, history, depending on where you want to pick it up, is never very far away. but today you've also said some very important things about the future, as well as about the present. i think there's going to be a lot of questions about the things that you've said. we have many members of the diplomatic corps in washington, d.c. the think tanks, which we are very glad to see. students from other

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